Amsterdam launches campaign against misbehaving tourists

Tourists at the I Amsterdam sign behind the Rijksmuseum
Tourists at the I Amsterdam sign behind the Rijksmuseum. (Photo: Mariordo / Wikimedia Commons)

Amsterdam launched a campaign to address misbehaving tourists on their behavior. The campaign Enjoy & Respect is specifically aimed at male visitors between the ages at 18 and 34. It makes clear that behavior like public urination is not only unacceptable, but will also cost you money, Het Parool reports.

Enjoy & Respect focuses on young tourists coming to the city for things like pub crawls and bachelor parties. It is the result of a study into the social climate in the city. The study found that the largest nuisance - noise, drunkenness, pollution and public urination - is caused by a small group, men up to the age of 34 from the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. "This group causes nuisance and adds little. They have a negative effect on the quality of life in our city", Frans van der Avert, director of Amsterdam Marketing, said to the newspaper.

The campaign was developed by Nico Mulder of Amsterdam Marketing. It consists of signs showing examples of bad behavior, like public urination. On the sign you see two options - peeing against a pole, or in a urinal. The second option is free, the first will cost you a fine of 140 euros. According to Van der Avert, the message is clear: you're free to do what you want, but if you behave poorly it will cost you. 

The English and Dutch language campaign will be prominently displayed in the Red Light District, Rembrandtplein and Leidseplein. It is also on English sites for cheap plane tickets and accommodation, and will pop up if someone searches online for 'pub crawls in Amsterdam', for example. Enjoy & Respect will cost 225 thousand euros this year alone and is financed by the municipality and business community. Amsterdam Marketing worked closely with Schiphol, GVB, Koninklijke Horeca Nederland, campsites and local residents on this campaign.